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October 19, 2014: Creating Electricity From Food Waste, Arresting Poachers and More

This week on National Geographic Weekend radio, join host Boyd Matson and his guests as they unearth the habits of the world’s largest-ever carnivore, digest kitchen waste to cook dinner, eat like a 500 year old king, stalk Chernobyl’s ruins, trace tree rings’ roots, write a novel about elephants with a plot twist, kayak to protest dams, prosecute poachers in Mozambique, and see the unseen as a large format film.

5 Surprising Facts About Squirrels (Hint: They Make Jerky)

As squirrels in the Northern Hemisphere hoard food for winter, we take a look at the industrious and diverse rodents, which can range from a half an ounce to 20 pounds.

You Cannot Save the Climate Without Trees

The People’s Climate March that trumpeted its way through the streets of Manhattan yesterday was led by communities on the front lines of climate change—and Indigenous Peoples were at the forefront of this group.  The tropical forests where they live are not only getting hammered by changing weather patterns, drug traffickers, invasive pests, and massive…

Barro Colorado, Island of Magic Diversity in the Middle of Panama Canal

National Geographic photographer Christian Ziegler shares pictures and thoughts about the marvelous diversity of Barro Colorado, a tropical island sanctuary in the middle of one of the world’s most famous and busy waterways. The award-winning photographer has updated “A Magic Web,” a large-format picture book about the island and its thousands of species.

Top 10 Headlines Today: Meteor Shower Today, Nazi Diary Discovered…

The top 10 stories on our radar today: Skywatchers this morning may have witnessed a rare meteor shower, the diary of Hitler’s confidant will soon be unveiled to the public, and …

EPA Makes Historic Announcement: First Greenhouse Gas Rule for New Power Plants

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released long-awaited greenhouse gas rules for new power plants this week. Using the Clean Air Act, the agency standard would set the first national limits on the amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions new power plants can emit. The EPA proposed the rule after delaying it several times since July 2011. Power plants are the largest…

Cherry Tree Planting in March 1912 Shaped Public Face of Washington, D.C.

The cherry trees are blooming in Washington. Tuesday, March 27, 2012, marks 100 years since First Lady Helen Taft and the Japanese ambassador’s wife, Viscountess Iwa Chinda, planted the first two trees. No photographs of the event exist, and newspaper accounts were sketchy. But historical records offer a picture of what happened that day and how it came about.

Eucalyptus: Freshwater Species of the Week

  Although trees perform many valuable ecological services, not every tree is a “good tree.” Some can be downright problematic, especially when they are invasive, crowding out native species and hogging resources like water and growing space. This is especially true in South Africa, where invasive plants like imported eucalyptus trees cover about 10% (19-million…

A Green Veneer: Sweden’s Forestry Industry Gets Low Marks Despite Reputation

A country like Sweden can and ought to lead on issues like sustainable forestry. But is it doing so? Freelance photojournalist Erik Hoffner visited the Scandinavian country to find out.

Earth Mother Wangari Maathai Dead at 71

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, President Obama, and other world leaders today paid tribute to Professor Wangari Maathai, Nobel Peace Prize laureate and one of Africa’s foremost environmental campaigners, who died on Sunday. She was 71.

From Early Geographic “Lady Writer,” D.C. Cherry Blossoms and Tsunami

Cherry trees are a cherished landmark of Washington, D.C. Admired by thousands of visitors at this time of year, when they are in flower, the trees represent an enduring bond between the U.S. and Japan. But few people know of the woman behind Japan’s gift of the trees to America–a pioneering National Geographic editor who famously reported for the magazine on the earthquake wave that devastated Japan in 1896, and introduced the word tsunami to the English language. Meet Eliza Scidmore.

Festival of Flowers Paints Epcot in Vivid Colors

Thirty million flowers, half a million plants, dozens of character topiaries and 1,000 butterflies add up to the 18th annual Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival, now blooming at Walt Disney World Resort, Florida.

An Amazon Forest Adventure: Carbon in Cowboy Country

This entry by Rane Cortez, a forest carbon development adviser at The Nature Conservancy, highlights Rane’s recent 10-day trip into São Félix do Xingu, a large municipality in the heart of the Amazon in northern Brazil. She is working with local communities and experts on potential strategies that reduce carbon emissions from these forests while…

Canada Sets Example for International Year of Forests

By Jeff Wells From pulp mill workers in Manitoba to indigenous hunters in the Amazon, hundreds of millions of people around the world rely directly on the forested expanses of our planet. All the rest of us depend on the ecological services forests provide. This year, 2011, has been officially declared the International Year of…

Australia’s Catastrophic Rains Herald Future Bounty

The ongoing deluge has wreaked severe damage and hardship in Australia. (Photos: Unprecedented, “Biblical” Floods Inundate Australia.) But when the waters subside, writes Deborah Tabart, the Chief Executive Officer of the Brisbane-based Australian Koala Foundation, the thirsty continent’s water table will be replenished, the trees will have had their fill, and Australia will be beautiful…